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WATCH: Google+ Hangout On Serbia And Kosovo's Normalization Agreement


Serbian Prime Minister Ivica Dacic, European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, NATO Deputy Secretary-General Alexander Vershbow, and Kosovar Prime Minister Hashim Thaci (left to right) pose at NATO headquarters in Brussels on April 19, when the deal was initialed.

Serbian Prime Minister Ivica Dacic, European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, NATO Deputy Secretary-General Alexander Vershbow, and Kosovar Prime Minister Hashim Thaci (left to right) pose at NATO headquarters in Brussels on April 19, when the deal was initialed.

On April 19, after 10 rounds of EU-mediated talks, officials from Serbia and Kosovo signed off on a normalization agreement that was quickly hailed as "historic."

RFE/RL's Glenn Kates hosted a one-hour Google+ Hangout with RFE/RL Brussels correspondent Rikard Jozwiak, RFE/RL Kosovo Unit head Arbana Vidishiqi, and RFE/RL Balkan Service correspondent Branka Trivic. They discussed the deal and its implications for the region.

Watch a recording of the talk below:


The 15-point agreement, proposed by EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, is meant to normalize ties between Serbia and Kosovo, as well as settle the status of Serbs in northern Kosovo.

READ: The leaked text of the document initialed in Brussels on April 19 and obtained by RFE/RL

Kosovo declared independence in 2008. The Serbian government and most of Kosovo's ethnic Serb minority, however, do not recognize Kosovar independence.

Kosovar Prime Minister Hashim Thaci said the agreement is a "recognition of Kosovo, its international status, and sovereignty and territorial integrity." But Serbian Prime Minister Ivica Dacic has cautioned that the deal must still be approved by the Serbian government.

Normalizing relations with Kosovo is seen by the EU as a key step for Serbia on its path toward EU membership.

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Written by RFE/RL editors and correspondents, Transmission serves up news, comment, and the odd silly dictator story. While our primary concern is with foreign policy, Transmission is also a place for the ideas -- some serious, some irreverent -- that bubble up from our bureaus. The name recognizes RFE/RL's role as a surrogate broadcaster to places without free media. You can write us at transmission+rferl.org

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